Japanese domestic airline Oriental Air Bridge will replace its 39-seat fleet of De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Dash 8-200 with ATR 42-600s starting next year.
The Nagasaki-based carrier said in a statement it was adding two ATR 42-600s, with the first scheduled to arrive next fiscal year and to be deployed to the routes of Nagasaki-Iki Island, Nagasaki Island. Goto Fukue and Nagasaki-Tsushima Island. The Japanese fiscal year runs from April 1, 2022 to March 30, 2023.
The airline, which owns three Dash 8-200s, has announced plans to replace its Dash 8-200s “one by one” and expects the higher capacity of the new 48-seat aircraft to help boost profits .
In addition to the three Dash 8-200s, the airline would also have three other aircraft, including a De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Dash 8-400 that it leases from All Nippon Airways.
The independent carrier, which mainly serves the southern islands of Japan, said: “Twenty years have passed since the introduction of the -200 type aircraft, which can accommodate 39 people, and the lifespan of the design. . [of the aircraft] has ended… the 48-seat ATR 42 will therefore be presented as renewal equipment.
The airline fails to mention when the second plane will be added.
He says: “The ATR42-600 is an economical aircraft… and suitable for operating the air routes of remote islands. “
“[The ATR 42-600] is an aircraft that has already been introduced by regional airlines… and because it has more seats, ”it should increase the airline’s profits, he adds.
The Dash 8-200 has the same airframe as the -100, except that it has a more powerful engine, the Pratt & Whitney PW123, which gives it better short take-off and landing capability. The runway at Iki Island Airport is only 1,200 m long.
According to Planespotters.net Online database, the airline received its third -200 in October last year and its first and second planes in 2001. Its three -200 are aged 20-22.
The image, from KN Aviation.net, shows an Oriental Air Bridge -200 taking off from the airport on Fukue Island.